Brad Mehldau: Dear Prudence


Dear Prudence


Brad Mehldau (piano)


Largo (Warner Bros 48114)

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Brad Mehldau (piano),

Derek “Oles” Oleszkiewicz (bass), Jim Keltner (drums), Matt Chamberlain (shaker, percussion)


Composed by Lennon/McCartney


Recorded: Hollywood, CA, April 2-8, 2001


Rating: 96/100 (learn more)

Brad Mehldau sounds completely comfortable bridging the gap between rock and jazz, and "Dear Prudence" is another of his unforced, genre-spanning efforts. He never overworks his covers by trying to do too much with them; instead, he respects the compositional boundaries and celebrates what made the tune great in the first place. The pianist's take on the melody here is pretty straightforward, and though the mood is mellow, the groove is buoyant thanks to Oles's swinging bass. The star, though, is Jim Keltner, the renowned rock session drummer who actually recorded with three of the Fab Four (Lennon, Harrison and Starr). His work is loose but precise, unpredictable and subtly extraordinary. His understated playing behind Mehldau's solo is fantastic, especially his slyly capricious hi-hat accents and floor-tom fills. Close listening will be richly rewarded.

Reviewer: Matt Leskovic

If you liked this track, also check out

Brad Mehldau: Martha My Dear
Brad Mehldau: Exit Music (For a Film)
Uri Caine: Blackbird

Related Links

Assessing Brad Mehldau at Mid-Career by Ted Gioia
The Dozens: Twelve Essential Brad Mehldau Performances by Ted Gioia
In Conversation with Brad Mehldau by Ted Panken

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  • 1 Eric Novod // Nov 20, 2008 at 12:15 AM
    Rush and Led Zep fans - turn away now! The greatest rock drummer of all time (!) is in full force on this track. Nobody can touch that slinky, swampy groove. Thanks for this review, Matt. PS - JK also plays great on two Bill Frisell records - Good Dog, Happy Man and Gone Just Like a Train. Check them out!